Midges of the genus Culicoides (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) were trapped weekly from May 2001 through December 2002 on two farms in the province of Barcelona (Spain). Dosrius farm was stocked with sheep and goats whereas Bellaterra farm had only sheep. This trapping programme was carried out within the framework of an investigation into the occurrence/absence of possible vectors of bluetongue virus (BTV) in mainland Spain. A total of 30 079 Culicoides specimens were collected from 165 light trap collections, comprising nine species: C. obsoletus (Meigen), C. pulicaris (Linnaeus), C. circumscriptus Kieffer, C. newsteadi Austen, C. imicola Kieffer, C. scoticus Downes & Kettle, C. punctatus (Meigen), C. pallidicornis Kieffer and C. flavipulicaris Dzhafarov. The last five are new to Catalonia, C. pallidicornis is also new to Spain and C. flavipulicaris is new to Iberia. The seasonal occurrence of these species is described here. Of those species, C. imicola is the main BTV and African horse sickness virus (AHSV) vector in Europe, whereas species belonging to the so-called Obsoletus group (C. obsoletus and C. scoticus in our study) are considered to be potential vectors for BTV.
- Seasonal occurrence